You have figured out what you like doing most (e.g. “I like doing sums”). You can make a career out of it only if it helps you offer something which might be useful to others. You are now thinking about possible professions. Even in the age of spreadsheets and apps a proficiency with numbers can be an edge if you wish to be an accountant, or an investment wizard, or a cricket statistician or a commentator. As we saw in one of the previous posts, each of the above professions will need additional skills.
Getting into a profession means you must make commitment to learn and improve all skills needed to be able a make a solid contribution. To be a cricket statistician you need not only be good with numbers but you also must acquire a deep knowledge of the game. You will need to develop proficiency with spreadsheets and bringing in information from different sources. You will also need the skill to synthesize available data into some kind of a ‘story’ and so on.
Your chances of success get much brighter if you like practicing almost all skills needed for your chosen career. Your success gets almost certain -if you also enjoy learning and practicing those skills and if you are willing to do so even if financial returns are not that high. For you, doing those things are rewards in themselves. You can sustain your intensity for long periods with such rewards.
Therefore, you need to understand what kind of rewards you are looking for before you commit to a career or a profession. If the rewards almost entirely depend on others (fees, praise, salary, perks) your efforts may fizzle out before your ‘luck’ smiles on you or you might continue just plodding along without any zest.
Great careers are built on learning, improving, exploring, and experimenting activities integral to them. Read how the master batsman Sachin Tendulkar used to practice batting all alone as a kid in his autobiography ‘Playing it My Way‘
I will continue to discuss other factors crucial for a shaping a successful career.
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